Wonder Woman (2017) grossed over $800 million and was considered an enormous success for Warner Brothers. It established Gal Gadot as the perfect Wonder Woman embodiment and launched Patty Jenkins as a blockbuster movie director. But, most importantly, it was an important milestone for inclusivity and female representation in front of and behind the camera. Wonder Woman 1984 was tasked to build on the success of its predecessor by setting up bigger stakes and capitalizing on the 1980s nostalgia that has been extremely popular lately.
Unfortunately, the sequel fails to reach the heights of the original blockbuster. Despite its fantastic first act (and intro), the film drags on for too long and fails to close in a satisfactory way. Wonder Woman 1984’s main fault is its lethargic editing and long runtime. But it is hard to avoid the feeling that there is a better version of the film in there because its script, in principle, is quite good.
Pedro Pascal and Kristen Wig make fantastic villains and their stories are both intriguing and well developed, but it is Wonder Woman’s own arc in the film that does not feel entirely fulfilling. The main reason is that Diana is always playing catch up to what we already know the villains are scheming. And even though it was great to see Steve (Chris Pine) return in a way that felt natural to the story, his role in the movie was anticlimactic; many expected him to play a bigger part in the story.
While Wonder Woman 1984 presents plenty of action and a couple of memorable turns, the film is too long to sustain anyone’s attention. Fans of the 1980s or of the protagonist itself might find enough substance to be enthralled, but there is simply not enough substance for the rest of us to consider this film a must-watch.
Director: Patty Jenkins